Cabinet have approved proposals to invest £2.6m to improve teaching capacity across four Primary Schools – with each project set to benefit from significant external investment.
An Officer report to Cabinet on Thursday, September 20, outlined how £1.6m Welsh Government funding could increase teaching space at Gelli Primary (£800,000), Llanharan Primary (£600,000) and Parc Lewis Primary (£200,000).
This investment will deliver a two-classroom extension block and external play area improvements at both Gelli and Llanharan, and internal remodelling and refurbishments, along with external play improvements, at Parc Lewis.
This funding has been secured following a successful grant submission by the Council, and the Welsh Government will wholly fund these schemes.
Council Officers have visited the three schools to start planning for these works which will now commence in Spring 2019 as part of the Council’s capital programme for 2018/19.
Additionally, Cabinet Members also agreed to invest £995,000 in Ffynnon Taf Primary, with £395,000 coming from significant Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) funding which is earmarked for the community.
The CIL funding will help to create additional capacity at the Victorian style school, where a double mobile classroom was added three years ago due to the growing number of children from within the catchment area requiring a school place. Further modernisation works are also required at Ffynnon Taf, which will be in addition to considerable capital funding that has been invested in the school in recent years.
The £395,000 CIL funding will contribute towards the near-£1m scheme at the school, replacing the temporary classrooms with a permanent new-build extension. The additional £600,000 funding would be allocated through #RCTinvest.
Works for the £995,000 scheme, including the £395,000 CIL contribution, will also start in Spring 2019, for completion in the autumn term in the 2019/20 academic year.
Councillor Joy Rosser, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Lifelong Learning, said: “The Council will be investing a further £2.6m to increase teaching space across four primary schools.
“It follows an invitation from Welsh Government to submit a business case to apply for funding to reduce infant class sizes – and one of the criteria for this was for schools which have no spare capacity to allow for additional classes.
“Following Cabinet’s decision, a further £2.6m will be invested to increase teaching capacity at four primary schools across the County Borough.
“The total package of investment will comprise of £1.6m of Welsh Government funding, to improve Llanharan, Gelli and Parc Lewis primary schools; whilst a further £995,000 - including £600,000 from #RCTInvest and a further £395,000 of CIL funding - will offer a permanent solution to the capacity issues at Ffynnon Taf primary school in Taffs Well.
“This Council continues to invest heavily in its schools as a priority area through #RCTinvest.
“Each year, the Council delivers a school summer improvement programme across the County Borough, and is also continuing with its huge 21st Century Schools investment with joint Welsh Government funding. This has seen £85m invested in Rhondda and Tonyrefail and a new £7.2m primary school for Cwmaman in September 2018.”
Posted on Thursday 27th September 2018